This month's issue of Booklist brings a nice batch of favorable reviews for four of our recent releases, excerpted below:
Approximate Continuum Comics by Lewis Trondheim: "The simple, unadorned black-and-white line drawings are agreeably loose and deceptively casual, compelling in their humorous expressiveness and economy. Trondheim’s autobiographical departure is of a piece with the rest of his sizable body of work, not only in its whimsical intelligence but also in that the characters are portrayed as anthropomorphic animals. Fans of Trondheim’s other efforts will enjoy viewing another facet of his work, and followers of graphic memoirs will appreciate seeing a comics master turn his hand to the genre." — Gordon Flagg
Celluloid by Dave McKean: "...McKean... tears through different artistic styles in explicit imagery that’s too striking for simple titillation, and while the dark edge in his work is palpable, it never turns disturbing (those with different sensibilities, however, may dispute both those assessments). For all its entwined body parts, unblushing exhibitionism, and surreal juxtapositions, this is both high art masquerading as pornography and transgressive erotica with lofty intentions, and it is respectful of both its subject and its audience." — Ian Chipman
Isle of 100,000 Graves by Jason & Fabien Vehlmann: "Norwegian cartoonist Jason works with a writer for the first time, and it’s a terrific match. His hollow-eyed, animal-faced characters deliver the deadest of deadpan humor ('Get out your leather gloves. The strangulation finals are about to begin.'). Like Tony Millionaire’s work, this comic shows that the line between cute and demented is perilously thin — and lots of fun to cross over. Despite the multiple beheadings and (mostly) jokey torturings, this is a fairly gore-free affair, so while some may choose not to foist it on kids, its sense of whimsical brutality is right up their alley." — Ian Chipman
Take a Joke by Johnny Ryan: "In Angry Youth Comix..., the [title] phrase is displaced from an interrogative into an imperative sentence — 'Take a joke, @#$%^&!' In Ryan’s comics universe, that means being cursed, sexually violated, soaked with ordure, dismembered, beheaded, and otherwise savaged. Ryan renders this wanton, pointless mayhem in a style descended from the ultraviolent, silent Felix the Cat animated cartoons and the big-nose school of joke cartoonists immortalized by those rude cocktail napkins you think you’ll never see again, but then you stop for a beer at some roadhouse, and voila! Vile beyond all credence, this stuff reduces its fans to teary, dribbling idiocy, others to nauseated indignation. If you can’t stand Tony Millionaire (Maakies) or the raunchiest of R. Crumb, you’ll hate it. High praise, indeed!" — Ray Olson
Cute Boys Alert: Simon Hanselmann, Michael DeForge and Patrick Kyle on Tour. Click here for tour details!
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